Growing up Salvadoreña, my parents did not condone body piercings. Which is exactly why I was determined to get a nose piercing.
As my 19th birthday approached, I realized I wanted to cross one final thing off my bucket list at the age of 18: a nose piercing. But I did a lot of extensive research beforehand. The idea of choosing to feel pain seemed a bit intimidating to me and I questioned whether it was really worth it. But in the end, for me, it definitely was. Here are 3 things I learned that really ended up helping me go through with the piercing, and the aftercare as well. I hope it helps you as well if you are debating on getting yours pierced too.
The idea of pain was the number one problem I had with going through with the piercing. How badly would it hurt?How long would the pain last? Would it hurt afterward? I asked multiple people and they all told me different things. Pain tolerance fluctuates depending on the individual; some people told me their piercing didn’t hurt at, others will say it pinched a little, or, the ever-popular: “it’s the most painful piercing I have ever gotten.” But what I heard most often was that it was fast, it felt similar to a pinch or flash of heat, and the worst part was the insertion of the L bend. And that was exactly what I experienced. The insertion of the needle did not hurt, it felt like a pinch. As it went through, it felt like something hot was passing through the cartilage. And the most painful part was when the piercer made the transition of passing the L-bend through the nose.
Choosing a nose stud
There are a couple type of studs you can pick from when getting your nose pierced. A straight rod, a screw, or an L-bend. Everyone told me not to get a straight pin; it would fall out. Instead, everyone advised me to choose an L-bend. They’re shaped exactly like they sound: like tiny Ls. Supposedly the shape of it will prevent it from sliding out as easily as a straight pin. But for me, that was not the case. The idea of getting a nose screw was not even mentioned to me as I went through this process, but little did I know that it was the most secure option.
Needless to say, the L-bend fell out in my sleep. I guess you could say I am a pretty violent sleeper, and when I woke up not even a week after getting the new piercing, the L-bend was under me and my nose was naked. Working myself up to a frenzy, I tried to simply put the stud back in. The hole on the outside was still open. But when I attempted to push it through, I simply ended up with a lot of pain, a tingly nose, and red, sore cartilage. Immediately, I grabbed my phone and googled solutions to my problem. I quickly found out that though the outside piercing can stay open for days, the inside mucus lining can close within hours; which was exactly how short of a time it took for mine to close.
I had to wait a month to get my nose re-pierced and this time I went to a different piercing shop. There, I was told that a nose screw would be much more secure. And sure enough, even though I am still a violent sleeper, there is no way that the stud is going to fall out unless I deliberately take it out. Additionally, the re-piercing process was nearly painless the second time. The screw slides in smoothly, instead of being twisted in like the L-bend. Quite personally, if you are paying a lot for a piercing, the type of stud you get should be your insurance. The straight rod is comfortable, the L is painful but easy, but the screw is the most secure.
As expected, I was told different things about aftercare. Some said to twist the stud while disinfecting it, others said not to touch it at all: ever. The most important things I have learned though are truly never to touch it with your fingers while it is healing. Fingers carry the most germs and this can easily lead to bacteria and infection. I also clearly learned to not sleep on my stomach. It is important to keep setting sprays, body wash, and facial wash away from the new piercing and only spray it with a certified disinfectant like H2Ocean. Keep in mind that the healing process is different for everyone. And if you plan on putting in a nose ring, like I am, it is important to wait for the piercing to fully heal before doing so.